Guardians of the Galaxy #1 Al Ewing and Juann Cabal Give Us A Dysfunctional Space Family (spoilers!)

author img
BY January 23, 2020

For Marvel, a #1 issue generally means that a new creative team is taking over a title, and leading the character or characters into a new era. We just saw this recently with Thor #1. And we’re seeing that now with Guardians of the Galaxy #1, from writer Al Ewing and artist Juann Cabal. After the catastrophic events of Donny Cates’s Guardians run, Ewing and Cabal pick up the band of misfits while they try and vacation. And this leads to one of the most disturbing images I’ve ever seen in comics…

Domestic Bliss Has No Place for the Guardians of the Galaxy

When we catch up with the Guardians, after a prologue where a crazed-Zeus attacks a peaceful Kree settlement, the team is gathered around a picnic table for a Thanksgiving feast. And then we see something that should not exist. That is wrong on levels that indicate something horrific has happened to the character. You need to see it to understand the horror:

Gamora, Guardians of the Galaxy, Star-Lord, Peter Quill, Al Ewing, Juann Cabal The horror…the horror. (Image: Guardians of the Galaxy #1 by Al Ewing and Juann Cabal, Marvel Comics)

Gamora…the deadliest woman in the universe…living a domestic life? This feels wrong. It is wrong. What happened to her? Well, that’s part of the problem. The beginning of the issue relies too much on previous events, so it’s not a good jumping on point. Drax is very different-looking, Groot can talk like everyone else, Rocket apparently nearly died and had to have all his cybernetics replaced. There’s too much that feels disconnected. In Thor #1, Donny Cates managed to bridge the gap from War of the Realms to his own thing without the reader trying to figure out what was happening. For Guardians of the Galaxy #1, Cabal portrays the changes well, but Ewing doesn’t give us enough information to get why they happened.

The Guardians of the Galaxy are at Their Weakest—So Ewing and Cabal Has Them Fight Gods

Once the awkward opening is out the way, we get a pretty cool story. The gods of Olympus woke up, and for some reason, they are pissed at everyone. When he destroys a peaceful Kree settlement, he declares:

Zeus, Olympus, Guardians of the Galaxy, Kree, Marvel Cosmic, Al Ewing Somebody needs a longer nap. (Image: Guardians of the Galaxy #1 by Al Ewing and Juann Cabal, Marvel Comics)

Nova goes to the Guardians for help, and Gamora, Drax, and Groot immediately say no. The alternate universe versions of Moondragon and Phila-Vell immediately say yes. But Rocket and Star-Lord are not so fast to decline or agree. Instead, they sneak off in the middle of the night as Quill leaves Gamora a text apologizing to her. Yikes.

The team fighting the Greco-Roman gods? Nova, Marvel Boy, Phyla-Vell, Moondragon, Rocket, and Star-Lord…not a great team considering the threat, and they know it. But it works for the Guardians of the Galaxy. Despite not knowing what happened before this issue (hey, there are a lot of comics to read, I’m trying), you know that this is what’s left. Ewing and Cabal didn’t create a Guardians of the Galaxy team that “made sense”—this team is always a bunch of misfits, and the new group isn’t fit for anything. They go into a massive threat without any real preparation and having barely worked together.

Ewing and Cabal Take You from “Meh” to “Cool” to “HOLY BALLS” in One Issue

Two-thirds the way through Guardians of the Galaxy #1, the issue hits a great stride, enough to forgive the earlier faults. The last bit makes you forget it. As things spiral out of control for the Guardians of the Galaxy, Ewing and Cabal dial it up to Herculean levels. Literally:

Hercules, Guardians of the Galaxy, Al Ewing, Juann Cabal, It’s about to go off! (Image: Guardians of the Galaxy #1 by Al Ewing and Juann Cabal, Marvel Comics)

And then it leaves off. Of course. However, we won’t have to wait issue after issue for Ewing and Cabal to wrap this up Guardians of the Galaxy vs the gods storyline—the solicitation for next month says the arc will end in issue #2. If this is the pace of the series, count me in.

 Grade: Hercules’s Lion Loincloth

(Featured Image: Guardians of the Galaxy #1 by Al Ewing and Juann Cabal, Marvel Comics)

COMICSMarvel

Roman Colombo finished his MFA in 2010 and now teaches writing and graphic novel literature at various Philadelphia colleges. His first novel, Trading Saints for Sinners, was published in 2014. He's currently working on his next novel and hoping to find an agent soon.

Leave a comment

Related

COMICSMarvel
X-Force #1 is as Brutal as Benjamin Percy Promised—If You Read Closely. (Spoiler Review)

“Bad things happen in the book.” That’s how writer Benjamin Percy described X-Force during the Dawn of X panel in October’s New York Comic-Con. His gruff voice and declaration that this would be the harshest X-Men book got a few chuckles. If you’ve never Percy speak before, his normal voice is what most actors strive […]

BY Roman Colombo November 13, 2019
COMICSDCIndependentMarvel
Legendary Comic Artist Ernie Colón Dead at 88

The artist Ernie Colón has passed away at the age of 88. He leaves behind a staggering body of work that stretched across several genres. In case you’re not familiar with his art, here is a look back at his career. Started Out in Comics Born in Puerto Rico, Colón was raised in New York, […]

BY Salomé Gonstad August 10, 2019
DCTV Shows
Superman & Lois Series In Development at CW with Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch

When Supergirl first premiered on CBS, the show had a strict rule that they were not allowed to show Superman. That rule changed by the time the second season of the show premiered, and since then the character appeared a number of times. Well now a statement from CW confirms that a new series, Superman […]

BY Joshua M. Patton October 28, 2019
Revenge of the Sith Retro Review – The Game

As a child of the mid 90s, I grew up heavily impacted by the Star Wars prequels. I remember attending a birthday party to see The Phantom Menace, having no knowledge there were others released decades ago. I became obsessed, and after seeing The Clone Wars, I was all aboard the hype train for Revenge […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 18, 2020
Best Rebuilds for NBA 2K20 – MyLeague Tips

I’m a huge fan of NBA 2K20, but most of my time is spent in one area of the game. While some work to become dribble gods on MyPark, I stick to MyLeague. Solely, for the the experience of managing a team. Working to rebuild teams on MyLeague is the reason I average over 200 […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 17, 2020
E3 Veteran Geoff Keighley Skipping Conference in 2020

I think one thing I love about video game journalism is getting to talk games. On the best day, covering gaming news involves great reveals, exciting titles, and hopes for my favorite series. On the worst day, I can usually say the downers about gaming journalism involve the industry. Sometimes, profits and sponsors get in […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 17, 2020
Marvel’s Avengers Pre-Order Deals: Where to Get The Best Bonus

Pre-ordering games used to be a way to make sure you had a highly anticipated title as soon as possible. Now, pre-orders are a sort of incentive for extra content and goodies. A fun bonus is usually enough to get me to pre-order a game, and an upcoming Marvel video game fits that bill for […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 14, 2020

Trending

Who is Carnage in the Marvel Universe? – Origins and Powers

In Venom, a final scene shows Woody Harrelson in a hilariously on-the-nose red wig. That was our first look at Cletus Kasady, more well known to some as Carnage. With Spider-Man playing a vital role to the state of the MCU moving forward, we can assume Kasady is going to be a major villain to […]

BY Taylor Bauer February 19, 2020
Disney+ Reveals First Clip of Season 7 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars by Highlighting the Bad Batch

Star Wars fans may eagerly await the next story in the films or season 2 of The Mandalorian. However, the most anticipated new thing is something, well, old. After debuting the release date for Season 7 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Disney+ released the first preview clip highlighting the Bad Batch. The title of […]

BY Joshua M. Patton February 19, 2020
Ben Affleck Opens Up About Why He Stopped Being The Batman In New Interview

The Batman is dead, long live the Batman! This is how it is for fans of the caped crusader. Sure, Bruce Wayne may be ageless and eternal in the pages of DC Comics for 80 years, but mere mortals age. Michael Keaton is more like Bruce Wayne in the Batman Beyond series than the character […]

BY Joshua M. Patton February 19, 2020
Alas, Green Arrow and the Canaries Has Not Yet Been Picked Up By the CW, Producer Confirms

For fans of the Arrowverse, specifically those who are sad about the Arrow series finale, Twitter got exciting in the wee hours of the morning. A writer for another site, who did successfully predict Titans being renewed for season 3, dropped what seemed like a seedling of hope. He said that Green Arrow and the […]

BY Joshua M. Patton February 19, 2020